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"In general I'm OK and I feel that I'm improving. In the GC we are more or less where we were supposed to be at this time of the race. Now we have a well deserved day of rest and then the TT, where I have good expectations."

Photo: Sirotti








31.08.2014 @ 19:41 Posted by Emil Axelgaard

After a poor showing in the first mountain stage, Rigoberto Uran bounced back with a solid performance in today's second mountaintop finish. Going into the first rest day, the Colombian is pleased with his improving condition and finds himself in the position he expected to be in.


Omega Pharma - Quick-Step Cycling Team went on the offensive in the 185km Stage 9 of La Vuelta a España on Sunday. First, Carlos Verona and Tom Boonen made the original breakaway of 31 riders. Then, Rigoberto Uran, led by Tony Martin, attempted to get a gap on other GC contenders to gain back some time late in the stage. The result was a 19th place finish for Uran, moving him up to 9th in the GC (+1'26") as there was a shift in the overall classification in a hectic final.


Three riders attacked out of the original breakaway — Bob Jungels (Trek Factory Racing), Javier Moreno and Winner Anacona (Lampre-Merida) — with about 19.3km to go in the stage. This was in anticipation of the summit finish following Cat. 2 Alto de San Rafael (11.5km, 4.2%). Those three had a 6 minute advantage over the peloton at the time, and they eventually got a decent gap on their former break mates.


Anacona went solo with 6km to go and he won the stage. Meanwhile, Uran and Martin had gone off the front with less than 10km to go, just before the final Cat. 1 ascent to the ski station at Valdelinares (8km, 6.6%). Those two caught up to Boonen still away after being in the original breakaway, and he helped pull for Uran with about 7km remaining. However, Team Sky led the peloton back to the move and it came down to a select group of GC contenders behind Anacona to determine who might wear the overall jersey going into the rest day.

Alexey Lutsenko (Astana) finished 2nd in the stage, and Damiano Cunego (Lampre-Merida) was 3rd.


Alberto Contador (Tinkoff-Saxo) attacked inside 1.5km to go in hopes of wearing the red jersey, but Nairo Quintana (Movistar) and Joaquim Rodriguez (Katusha) rode back to him by the final meters. The rest of the select group full of GC contenders was splintered behind them.


Quintana is now the overall leader by 3" over Contador.

"This morning there were several attacks, then around kilometer 30 I managed to enter in the big breakaway of 31 riders with Tom," Verona said "We took a good advantage, we knew after a while that the winner of the stage could be in the breakaway. Anacona was really strong, he did a great race.


"Concerning me, I still missed a bit of power after the crash of a few days ago, but the good thing is that I'm improving day by day and I really would like to be important in the next mountain stages for Rigoberto."


"Today I felt better compared with the first uphill finish of a few days ago," Uran said, "The weather was a bit crazy, we started with the hot temperature and we finished under the rain.


"The team today rode really well. We were present in the front with Tom and Carlos, and in the peloton the guys did a great job for me. For example, when Tony led me in the last descent to avoid risks.


"In general I'm OK and I feel that I'm improving. In the GC we are more or less where we were supposed to be at this time of the race. Now we have a well deserved day of rest and then the TT, where I have good expectations. I trained a lot with the my Specialized Shiv before La Vuelta and I'm looking forward to this race."



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